The Jamestown Board of Public Utilities Water Division will hold fall flushing of water mains starting the first Saturday night of October and continuing throughout the BPU water system through Thursday, Oct. 17, weather-permitting.
Fall flushing is scheduled to start at 9 p.m. Saturday, in the village of Falconer, and take place all Saturday night into Sunday until the entire village of Falconer is flushed. When Falconer is flushed, there may be discolored water on the north side of Jamestown around the Buffalo Street area on Sunday.
In addition, pre-flush activities will take place again this fall in Falconer on Friday, Oct. 4, that may cause an isolated disturbance in the Mapleshade/Aldren Avenue areas.
Following the Falconer flush, crews then will move into the northeast section of Jamestown, near Jamestown Community College and Lutheran, at 8 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 6.
Flushing will proceed for two weeks throughout the rest of the BPU water system nightly from 8 p.m. to 4 a.m., Sundays through Thursdays, until the process is finished. Once the village of Falconer is flushed, no flushing will take place on Friday and Saturday nights throughout the rest of the process.
Specific flushing locations will be posted daily on the BPU website at www.jamestownbpu.com, where customers can view actual maps showing the location of flushing that night. In addition, locations will be posted on FACEBOOK and Twitter, on Page A2 of The Post-Journal, on the Time Warner Weather Channel crawl and on radio stations SE93, WJTN, WHUG, WKSN, 106.9-FM and WRFA-FM. Flushing each night is weather permitting.
Customers who are unsure about their flushing location schedules may call the BPU communications coordinator at 661-1680. Customers who reach voice mail when they call the number are requested to leave their flushing addresses and telephone numbers so that the BPU may call them back as soon as possible with their flushing dates.
Water customers are advised to pay attention to flushing announcements for their neighborhoods. If the flushing is taking place in the vicinity of a home, all homes in the area may have discolored water even if the home is on a different street than the flushing. Be careful before drawing water into hot water systems like heating, washing machines and dishwashers by running cold water in the bathtub for a few moments to see if the water has cleared.
If home plumbing isn't used between 8 p.m. and 4 a.m. on the night a home is scheduled for flushing, a resident may not experience any discolored water.
"BPU water mains are flushed twice a year," says Becky Robbins, BPU communications coordinator. "BPU employees open hydrants systematically, one at a time, allowing water to run full force, flushing out sediments and minerals that have settled in pipes."
The flushing process not only cleans the pipes, but also allows the utility to achieve greater flows through its mains. Flushing also provides BPU employees with the opportunity to inspect valves and hydrants to keep them in good working condition for fire protection.
The alternative to flushing is adding rust-inhibiting chemicals to the water, according to Robbins, which the utility has made a conscious effort not to do.
"Adding chemicals to our water supply could affect the taste and feel of our water," Robbins said. "Using such chemicals also would increase water distribution costs."
BPU Customer Service offers a rust stain remover to customers who may get caught with a load of laundry washed by mistake in discolored water. Commercial products also are sold at local supermarkets to assist in ridding laundry of such stains. Such products should be used to rewash the laundry before it is dried. The BPU Customer Service Office, located at 92 Steele St., is open from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. weekdays.
For more information, contact Mrs. Robbins at 661-1680.